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May 21, 2013 10:58 AM

Stone Brewing Co at Liberty Station - great space!

Had a great time at the newly opened Stone Brewing Company at Liberty Station. Loved the interior and the servers uniforms. Restaurant is suitable for large groups and families with children. I had the mussels and the creme brulee. A must visit for beer lovers.

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  1. Sucks that the Oceanside place does not serve food and has to close at 9 due to city regulations.

    5 Replies
    1. re: chris2269

      I think you are confusing the company stores (they also have one in South Park and one in Pasadena) with the restaurants, Chris.

      1. re: RB Hound

        I will take note...I did not know there was difference. I guess if you serve food different laws apply so you can stay open later.

        1. re: chris2269

          The company stores are small storefronts, used to sell bottles, fill growlers, and sell swag as well. If you have a glass, they can sell you beer by the glass, but otherwise that is all they do.

          The restaurants at the brewery and now in Liberty Station are much larger entities, and are, well, restaurants that have bars. They probably can sell you swag, bottles, and growler fills (in other words, have a company store in part of the restaurant), but I'm not sure about that.

          Stone's Liberty Station restaurant is the largest restaurant in San Diego now - 700 seats if they are running full steam, from what I've read.

          1. re: RB Hound

            We went on Sunday - the hostess gave us a quick tour of the place - it is indeed massive - we ended up grabbing a table outside and playing bocce ball for a couple of hours (they also have a courtyard for movies). I had a couple of J's OT Stouts (brewed @ Liberty Station), an Enjoy by, and a couple of bites of the wild boar ribs appetizer. Will definitely do it again.

            1. re: Stiflers_Mom

              Sweet. Bocce courts. I will think I'm back on the hill in St Louis except could only get Busch, toasted raviolis were the only thing to eat and the weather sucked.

    2. I really like the look and ambience of the place. The designers seem to have drawn on concepts from the beer gardens in Munich -- a nice touch, I think. Yet it has it's own unique layout, which is very appealing. A real winner! It's nice to have something like this in San Diego, not to mention that their beers are really excellent (IMHO). Now, if they can pair great food to go with the beer (I didn't eat there), well, then it would be in its own league.

      2 Replies
      1. re: DoctorChow

        The menu has beer pairings! Also a great store in the back that serves tastings.

        1. re: DoctorChow

          I had a different reaction to the look and ambience.

          Thousands of sailors passed through these rooms sixty years ago, and it was an active Navy base only fifteen short years ago. In the redevelopment of NTC San Diego, they didn't try to hide the history of the place. There are anchors, chains, guns, flags, and naval signage all over Liberty Station.

          I wish that Stone had taken some interior design cues from the historic setting and building, but instead, they did their best to fight it. There are big slabs of stone, water features, curtains and gargoyles all over the bar and dining room. Walking in from the outside, the medieval design elements were unexpectedly incongruous, and it left me feeling like I was having a manufactured "Epcot" experience. Curious decision.

          The beer, of course, is outstanding — although I found myself wishing that the beer menu was grouped by style, instead of by brewer. Or maybe in addition to brewer. And I enjoyed my salad.

        2. Can anyone who's been to both the Liberty Station and the Escondido brewery speak to the difference in the variety of beers available? I assume the food is the same at each, and I was also assuming they would have a wider array of beers at the actual brewery, but I wanted to confirm before I spent an hour driving north to Escondido...

          3 Replies
          1. re: cactuschowdah

            You can find a current beer offering page for each restaurant/brewery on their website. You can also check their growler fill schedule on their website for the south park store if it is just a specific beer you are seeking out.

            1. re: Stiflers_Mom

              Liberty Station will have "in house brews", so there probably will be a tad bit of divergence between the two - but I don't think you can go wrong with either.

            2. re: cactuschowdah

              Food overall is different from Escondido, although they are doing the duck tacos.

            3. They also offer wine on tap. We were disappointed with the stinky cheese plate but enjoyed the mussels, lentil and cheese soups, and hummus. I'd like to try the kimchi next time.
              Very attentive service and bustling atmosphere.

              12 Replies
              1. re: globocity

                Great place, love me some stinky cheese and a firm IPA.

                1. re: cstr

                  Stinky cheese platter and some cold craft beers..priceless

                  1. re: cstr

                    Personally I prefer a bold red wine with strong cheeses, but a hearty beer, especially Stone Brewing style, will do just fine. Strong cheeses are usually strong smelling and definitely not for everyone, so diner beware.

                  2. re: globocity

                    What cheeses did they have? Nothing interesting?

                    1. re: DougOLis

                      $18 for three paltry-sized cheeses. One was chèvre, another was a Sheep's milk, can't recall the third. Pretty forgettable and pricey for what we got.
                      Unrelated but went to a beer and cheese tasting at a shop in North Park. Was really impressed with the pairings! Venissimo cheese and brew from Bottlecraft.

                      1. re: globocity

                        I see. So by "stinky" you meant to say that the cheeses you were served at Stone were "not so hot" and "small portions", as opposed to being cheeses with a strong odor. In that case, thanks for the tip. I've been wanting to go back there and try their food and when I do, I won't get the $18 cheese plate.

                        1. re: DoctorChow

                          Just had at $13 cheese plate at Luce. Gorgonzola, Asiago, and Brie. All excellent and with very generous portions. Also paired with tasty pickled vegetables, apple slices, toasted bread, and mustard. A way better deal.

                          1. re: globocity

                            Eh. Those are pretty standard and common cheeses; not terribly interesting. Depending on what Stone actually had, I might be more inclined to prefer Stone. If there wasn't anything special about what Stone was serving, then I see your point.

                            1. re: DougOLis

                              I've had Stone's "stinky" cheese plate several times in Escondido, including last week. My friends never seem to learn -- after a beer or two they throw money away on this boring offering. The goat's cheese last week was like a knock-off Humboldt Fog (or that's what it was, but not super-fresh). Good, but not novel. The sheep was fine, and I can't remember the third, though it was something I instantly recognized. Aged gruyere, maybe? It came with a rhubarb compote and the house-made crackers. I like the crackers, but not for $18. I used to like their plate with 3 house-made beer cheeses and crackers -- anyone remember that? I suppose it was just too much work, or maybe people were disappointed upon receiving an atypical "cheese plate."

                        2. re: globocity

                          $18 for some chèvre and some other paltry sized cheese..
                          I'd be flipped...hate being robbed like that.
                          Do you recall the name of the place in NP for your cheese tasting?
                          Love me a good cheese platter with a bottle of red or craft beer.

                          1. re: Beach Chick

                            The beer & cheese tasting was at a super cool shop called "Pigment" for a book signing.
                            Yeah I felt Stone's cheese plate fell way short considering the price. Would've preferred to spend that on alcohol!

                            1. re: globocity

                              A make your own terrarium bar and a beer & cheese tasting at Pigment..sweet.
                              Gotta check out the Cheese & Beer book.
                              Looks like a good time and the shop is darling.


                    2. Stone Brewing beer and ales speak for themselves. They are outstanding. Right now, their new place at Liberty Station is noteworthy for its spacious patio and outdoor gardens. This is really unusual in this part of San Diego. Real estate costs being what they are, anything even close to downtown is usually tightly configured. It does not appear that they have figured out their food operation yet with regard to quality, quantity, and price point but they have the beer and they have the floor plan. Here's hoping the rest will sort itself out.